I am back from a fantastic wedding and brief honeymoon. There is plenty to cover, but in the meantime, please check out a new post on Anthony Jordan's site.
A couple notes:
Baltimore City is proving yet again that the maxim of sunlight being the best disenfectant does not apply to their politics. The former Chairman of the Board of Education has been gifted a BS job paying him $175,000 a year, which is the second highest paying job in the Baltimore school system. What will he be doing? He will be " in charge of ensuring that the systems of the district, from human resources to food services and building maintenance, work more smoothly." In other words, his job has no quantifiable measure. There will be no way we will be able to tell if he is doing a good job...or any job at all.
The US House has passed a "Cash for Clunkers" bill, which would provide up to $4,500 vouchers for fuel efficient vehicles when trading in an inefficient vehicle. My only question is whether those economists that are explaining the housing bubble also read the newspaper. If they did, they may mention to the crowded masses that Congress shows no shame in creating market bubbles with subsidies such as this, where there is a predictable "end of the road" wherein prices will collapse. If I give you a dollar a day to buy something you may not ordinarily buy (i.e., The NY Times), but then all the sudden stop paying you that dollar, you probably will stop buying the paper. If I extend this over thousands of people, the price of the NY Times will plummet once my subsidy dries up. Same for these cars. The bigger issue is that the prices will become inflated at the cost of those who otherwise want to buy fuel efficient cars. Market manipulation is a bad idea.